Isham residents count traffic in new bid for village bypass

The main road through Isham sees a large volume of traffic.
The main road through Isham sees a large volume of traffic.

A team of Isham residents are out counting vehicles passing through the village today (Tuesday) as part of their bid for a bypass.

Almost two dozen residents, who brand themselves the Isham Bypass Action Group, are taking it in turns to count traffic heading in both directions over a 24-hour stint from midnight.

Campaigners have been waiting for more than 40 years for a bypass and feel they keep getting overshadowed by other projects, such as the Geddington bypass.

And group leader Graham Rait, who lives in Middle Street, says enough is enough.

He said: “It seems as though every time we get to the top of the list, we get bumped down again.

“We need a bypass so badly like the Geddington one, which nobody is using.

“We’ve spoken to the county council, MPs, transport ministers, but it feels like nobody is taking our views seriously enough to act on them.

“The traffic through the village is horrendous and we know plans have been put in and approved, but they are just abandoned.”

The last 24-hour count in June 2011 saw almost 23,000 vehicles pass through the village.

And Mr Rait says with the likelihood that the next count will see an increase, it’s time for plans to be put forward once again.

He added: “With all the developments going on the traffic problem can’t go on the way it is.

“We’ve heard rumours that the next area to get a bypass will be Flore, so we’re being ignored again – nothing ever happens for us.

“The industry in the area is growing but that can’t take place without doing something on the road.”

A spokesman for Northamptonshire County Council confirmed that an Isham bypass is in their plans.

He said: “The Isham bypass is a priority scheme for Northamptonshire County Council and it is important for not only the residents of Isham but to also support further growth in the county.

“Recently £15million of Growth Fund money has been secured through the government’s Growth Deal through Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership for this scheme but as it would cost about £38million to build, this leaves a funding gap.

“Work is now underway to see how extra funding can be obtained.”